SSTI Digest

The latest reporting and analysis on breakthroughs in technology-based economic development research and issues that matter most to you. To receive the SSTI Weekly Digest via email, sign up here.


Geography: New York

States take the lead on climate change

When Gov. Janet Mills addressed the United Nations General Assembly on Sept. 23, it was the first time a sitting governor of Maine has been asked to address the body. She had been invited as part of her participation in the UN Climate Action Summit 2019, and has made tackling climate change and embracing renewable energy key priorities of her administration. She is not the only governor stepping into the role where the federal government has backed out.

NY unveils $175 million workforce development initiative

Last week, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo launched a new effort to streamline the state’s workforce development programs. The $175 million Workforce Development Initiative will consolidate the state’s fragmented workforce development funding opportunities. Using the state’s 10 regional economic development councils (REDC’s) to suggest and prioritize projects, the initiative will offer awards in three competitive categories: public-private partnerships that expand infrastructure and capacity for state universities to meet employer needs; programs to expand employer investment in workforce pipelines; and, workforce solutions that provide flexible funding for innovative workforce development projects such as those targeting advanced industries or underrepresented populations.

Startup competitions target the circular economy

The circular economy, a phrase meant to redefine economic growth beyond the current “take-make-waste” extractive industrial model, is gaining attention around the world as a way to produce more positive environmental and social benefits. Over the past few months, three cities have announced efforts to promote circular economy startups. In New York City, a contest will offer a $500,000 prize to the best idea and business plan that seeks to repurpose the city’s recyclables and manufacture a product to sell to the local market. The City of Phoenix and Arizona State University announced four companies will participate in an incubator affiliated with the Resource Innovation and Solutions Network (RISN). Last fall, public sector partners and the university-based Austin Technology Incubator (ATI) collaborated to launch a new Circular Economy Incubator in the region.

Tech Talkin’ Govs part 4: Opportunity Zones, workforce development, tech hubs, and more in governors plans to build economies

Governors are reaching into their toolkits to build tech-based economies, utilizing Opportunity Zones, tax credits, broadband infrastructure and workforce development initiatives among other things. This week, as we continue to review their state of the state addresses for TBED news, we see some governors still trying to reshape their states’ struggling economies while others are building on past successes and proposing new initiatives.

NY Regional Councils awarded more than $20 million for TBED, $763 million overall

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has announced more than $763 million for economic development projects throughout the state as part of the regional economic development council (REDC) competition. The program, which tasks leaders in 10 regions to determine economic development priorities, has awarded more than $6.1 billion across 7,300 projects since its inception in 2011. In each region, funding went toward projects such as infrastructure, main street revitalization, feasibility studies, strategic planning, microenterprise funds, and workforce development.

States’ fiscal picture improves with growing economy

The ability of states to deliver the services promised to its residents relies on their fiscal soundness. With most states beginning their fiscal year in July, SSTI has reviewed the current fiscal standing for each state and here presents a snapshot of our findings.

Most states ended their fiscal year with a surplus and continue to recover from the Great Recession, with a growing economy and job gains. However, they face continuing demands on their budgets, with expanded Medicaid payments and the growing opioid crisis confronting nearly every state. Such decisions affect the state’s ability to fund innovation efforts, from the amount of support available for higher education and STEM programs, to funding for entrepreneurship, and forging public private partnerships to strengthen innovation programming that the private sector cannot fully support.

Our analysis found that some states that rely on the energy sector to fund their spending priorities continue to struggle, while others are already factoring in anticipated revenues as a result of new Supreme Court rulings involving gaming and online sales tax collections.

KY, MO, NY, VT state budget proposals reveal cautious approach

Governors continue to be cautious in their budget proposals, with many TBED programs seeing level funding or modest increases and cuts in some states while few new programs are being introduced. Kentucky is transferring one program to economic development, while at the same time reducing its funding. Missouri is proposing short-term benefits that may impact longer-term growth, while New York is looking to fund its life sciences initiative announced last year and Vermont is proposing an increase for its growth and innovation pilot project.

Kentucky

Tech Talkin’ Govs 2018: AZ, FL, IA, ID, MS, NY, VT present state of the state addresses

SSTI’s Tech Talkin’ Govs feature returns as governors across the country roll out their state of the state addresses. We review each speech for comments relevant to the innovation economy, and bring you their words directly from their addresses. In this first installment, we present excerpts from governors in Arizona, Florida, Indiana, Iowa, Mississippi, New York and Vermont.

With the seat up for election in 36 states this fall, many governors are delivering what may be their last state of the state address (see last week’s story on the definite turnover in 17 states and another 19 eligible for reelection). Some governors are more specific in their addresses regarding the innovation economy, such as Idaho where its governor is seeking additional money for college and career advising, an additional $5 million for the Opportunity Scholarship program, and a new position to coordinate the work of all its higher education institutions. Iowa’s governor is calling on the legislature to pass the Future Ready Iowa Act and proposes a new scholarship for Iowans who decide to pursue up to a two-year degree in a high-demand field as well as more money for apprenticeships. Taxes are taking a large part of the discussion for many governors. For instance, the Florida governor is hoping for a constitutional amendment to make it more difficult for future legislators to raise taxes, while in New York, the governor says the state will challenge the federal tax code.

$755 million awarded for NY economic development

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced more than $755 million in economic and community development funding awarded through Round VII of the Regional Economic Development Council initiative. The Regional Councils were established in 2011 as a community-based and performance-driven approach to economic development. Each of the 10 regions of the state must develop strategic plans tailored to their region.

New programs in NY, WI make manufacturing productivity a priority

Overall growth in manufacturing should accelerate this year and grow even more in 2018, according to recent projections from the Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation (MAPI). As a way to support manufacturers — especially small and medium sized ones — two states recently announced programs to boost their productivity.

States of Innovation 2017: Free tuition moving into more state toolboxes

This week we continue our series on state legislation pertaining to the innovation economy that has been enacted this year around the country. This second installment of the States of Innovation 2017 series deals with free tuition.

A number of states took action to increase the education and skills of their workforce by implementing free or greatly reduced tuition programs at either community colleges or state colleges. The move to increase access to higher education while not new, took up increased urgency this year. With Arkansas, Florida, Kentucky, New York, North Carolina, Rhode Island and Tennessee all taking action this past year, Maine and North Carolina were among others considering other options but as of today’s publication not moving the proposals forward.

IA, ND, NY state budgets hit and miss on innovation funding

SSTI continues its reporting on actions taken by state legislatures to invest in economic growth through science, technology, innovation and entrepreneurship. This week, we look at the budgets passed and signed by governors in Iowa, New York and North Dakota, finding mostly level and some increased funding for innovation programs in Iowa and New York – including free tuition at in-state colleges for qualifying residents – while North Dakota is looking at decreased funding for programs.

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